Recently, President Obama made a big speech. He was worried about education standards. He wanted to divert more resources into improving basic reading skills and giving people a better understanding of the world around them. It was interesting to see how many voices were raised in complaint. They did not agree it should be a high priority for people to know more about the world. These are the voices of big businesses like insurance that rely on you not understanding how policies work. There is more profit to be made if people do not read and understand what they are buying. How bad is this problem? The answer comes in a recent survey carried out by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC). It seems only 45% of you have any real sense of confidence when you buy insurance policies, more than 60% failed to define simple concepts from health and auto policies, and 86% did not understand the terms being used in the healthcare reform debate. When insurance is so important to financial survival in the US, it is disheartening that people are not making decisions based on the best information.
Here is a quick test:
- if some property is stolen from your vehicle, can you claim its value on your auto policy?
- is your credit history taken into consideration when you buy a policy?
- when you buy a liability policy which insures 100/300/100. what does the last figure mean?
When you want insurance, you could make a policy decision only to buy through an agent. Being able to talk to a person gives you access to their knowledge and experience. It can give you more confidence. Except most agents will charge you a fee or there will be commission deducted out of your premium instalments, so this advice can come expensive. Is it worth it when you can do a little study and learn what you need to know. As a starting point, look at http://www.InsureUonline.org/. Getting more savvy means saving money and getting a better deal by buying a policy online. So long as you shop around, getting as many auto insurance quotes as possible, you should always be able to find a good deal. But, if you are still uncertain, do not be afraid to pick up the telephone before writing out a check or authorizing a credit card payment. Now you make a choice. Your state has a Department of Insurance and all of them run help lines to answer your questions. Alternatively, call the auto insurance company directly. Make sure you understand your policy before you find out the hard way when making a claim. In other words, you should always protect yourself and avoid future losses by asking before you buy.
The answers to the questions are: property stolen from your vehicle is covered by your homeowners policy not the auto insurance policy; your credit score is a key factor for setting your premium rate in the majority of states; and the final $100,000 is the maximum amount payable for damage to property.